1939 London Rating (Site Value) Bill

Below can be found a summary of the 1939 London Rating (Site Values) Bill, with cross-references to the 1931 Act.

The reader may benefit from first reading the summary of the 1931 Finance Act, which can be found here.


(Presented by the Rt Hon Herbert Morrison, Miss Megan Lloyd George, Sir Percy Harris Bt, Mr Latham, Mr Silkin & Mr Stokes,

2 & 3 Geo VI Session 1938 1939

To provide for the rating of the annual site value of land in the administrative county of London; and for purposes connected therewith

1. Short Title

London Rating (Site Values) Bill 1939

2. Interpretation

Definition of terms


3. Ascertainment of annual site value                                  (1931 section 8)

The annual site value of a land unit shall be the annual rent which the land unit might be expected to realise if demised with vacant possession at the valuation date in the open market by a willing lessor upon a perpetually renewable tenure upon the assumptions that at that date there were no buildings on the site.


4. Insertion                                                                             (1931 section 9)

A column with land values will be added to the rating list. These apply for 5 years.


5. Alterations                                                                         (1931 section 10)

If land units are broken up or combined the lists will be altered.


6. Notice of alteration in value                                             (1931 section 9)

When alterations to the list are made the owners will be notified.


7. Objections                                                                          (1931 section 11)                   

There is provision for objections to be raised to the valuations.


8. Totals of annual site values

The total of all the annual site values will be entered in the list.


9. Appeals to quarter sessions                                              (1931 section 11)

There is provision for appeals for those not satisfied with the way their objection has been treated.


10. Further Provisions as to notices objections and appeals.

Additional details of the objection and appeals procedure.


11. Site value rate

2/- in £ for year ending to 31st March  (10%)                                (1931 section 7)

The rate falls on the occupier but is then deductible from rent payments        (1931 section 15)

12. Making and collection of site value rate

The rate is payable for the year in advance.


13. Recovery of site value rate

If rate payments are in arrears then the authority has powers to collect the money directly from rent paying tenants.


14. Site value rate to be a charge on land                            (1931 section 18)

Refers to 1925 Law of Property Act. Rating authority has status as if they were mortgagees by deed having powers of sale and lease of accepting surrenders of leases  and of appointing a receiver.


15) Exemptions                                                                      (1931 section 19)

1)         a) land owned and occupied by the Crown

            b) park, garden or other space open to the public

            c) protected Squares

            d) specific exemptions from previous legislation, e.g. for schools

            e) land occupied by foreign ambassadors etc (if the tax is payable by the lessor)

            f) land used for water, electricity services

            g) incorporeal herediment

2) Burial sites – the assessed value shall not exceed the rateable value

3) land held by the Crown under lease or owned by the Crown and leased no tax is payable by the Crown

4) For land leased by the Crown, if the rent is greater than the assessed value no tax is due, if it less then the difference has to be paid

5) For land leased by the Crown, if the rent paid is greater than the assessed value then the owner has to pay.


16 Amendment of rate                                                                      (1931 section 13)

If there are errors in the list they should be amended and the new values apply form when the amendment was made.

17 Change of assessee etc during rating period

If ownership changes then the liability to pay changes with it.

18 Contracts freeing owners from site value rates to be void          (1931 section 21)

If agreements were made before the legislation that the lessee or tenant would pay all rates then these agreements are void.

19 Valuation list to be in force notwithstanding objections or appeals

Owners have to pay the amount stated on the list. After alterations the payments have to be adjusted accordingly.

20 Power to require returns &c.                                                      (1931 section 22,23)

The rating authority has the power to demand returns etc relating to the payment of relevant rents.

21 Service of documents                                                                   (1931 section 24)

Documents which need to be served can be sent by hand or through the post.

22 Precepts by Council

The rating authority has to hand over to the Council an amount equal to 10% of the total annual rateable value given in the list.

23 Adjustment

If changes are made in the list then corresponding adjustments are made in payments made between the rating authority and the Council.

24 Application of Act of 1869

Provision made in the 1869 Act applies to the present act.

25 Government grants, etc.

26 Receipts and expenses



The assessee is the estate owner as defined in the Law of Property Act 1925.

Source Material - Original Parliamentary Documentation

1939 Bill: 1939 London Rading (Site Value) Bill